Southeast Missouri State University celebrating opening of International Village with ribbon-cutting ceremony

SEMO open international village

CAPE GIRARDEAU, MO (KFVS) - Southeast Missouri State University has opened a new building dedicated to supporting the university’s international student population. The International Village is located at 1025 N. Sprigg Street.

Cutting the ribbon were University president Dr. Carlos Vargas, vice president of enrollment management Dr. Debbie Below, Director of International Education and Services (IES) Dr. Kevin Timlin, Breanna Walling, and students Ruchika Sharma and student Regent Luke LeGrand.

“So far, there has been a lot of good energy around campus about the new facilities, especially with international students,” said Timlin. “It has been well received by out international recruitment partners, as it is a unique initiative.”

Southeast has 636 international student attending this spring and many of them use the new facilities for coffee hours, game nights, the International Student Association Prom and a Ladies Night hosted by the Intensive English Program (IEP).

“It is spaces such as this that give students an opportunity to learn from one another and feel at home on a college campus," said Below.

The new building consolidated several department once scattered in different buildings under one roof. A second phase in the construction of the International Village will be addressed at a future date, including repurposing three cottages into residential housing.

The administrative building includes office space for IES and IEP and a upgraded gym for social, recreational and learning activities. An adjacent residential kitchen is also being used as a catering prep area for events in the gym or for students social activities.

“With a dedicated space, we can invest in the resources and support students need to find success," Willing said.

Copyright 2019 KFVS. All rights reserved.